Two fashion bloggers who tracked Kate Middleton’s and Meghan Markle’s every look are turning their attention stateside to focus on a new subject: Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.
“Any good politician knows that what they wear sends a message. Whether we like it or not, it is part of the package,” says journalist Susan Kelley, the founder of the fashion blog What Kate Wore.
In 2011, Kelley launched What Kate Wore, which chronicles Kate Middleton’s style. Kelley’s friend Susan Courter created a similar site dedicated to Meghan Markle, What Meghan Wore in 2016. Kelley and Courter joined forces to write about Harris’s style online.
Focused on the intersection of politics and style, the site What Kamala Wore was created to break down outfits worn by Harris at public engagements. While the website’s mission is similar to the fashion blogs dedicated to following Meghan’s and Kate’s sartorial choices, Kelley shares key differences she has noticed between following Harris and the royals.
Kelley explains that for the royals, Kensington Palace releases designer credits, such as who made each article of clothing or accessory. This is not the case with Harris, as she “does not want to be known for her wardrobe or who she’s wearing,” she says.
Although it is an added challenge breaking down each outfit, Kelley notes that Harris’s outfits are consistent, accessible and authentic. For example, Harris was repeatedly seen on the campaign trail wearing jeans and Converse Chuck Taylor sneakers, a very relatable look that’s easily replicable.
Kelley has learned through following Harris that she is not a public figure who cares about the “hottest trend or the latest thing off the runway” or considers fashion a high priority.
“She is about the work and the mission and accomplishing things,” Kelley says.
However, Harris is cognizant of the way that apparel can be used to maximize a message. For example, the white Carolina Herrera suit that the vice president-elect wore when she and Joe Biden made victory speeches sent a powerful message, as it appeared to be a nod to the suffragists who fought for women’s right to vote.
Kelley says she plans for 10 percent of the website’s profits will go toward the HBCU Foundation, which funds historically Black colleges and universities, as Harris has spoken at great length about her experience at Howard University and the importance of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the United States.
“The dialog has been so negative and vitriolic in this country over politics that for me, What Kamala Wore is a teeny bit of escape,” says Kelley.
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